Carl Eschenbach leads solo for Workday

Carl Eschenbach

As Workday jumps into its new financial year 2025, the HCM giant has announced its year-long co-CEO Carl Eschenbach will be taking a solo lead from today.

Aneel Bhusri, Workday’s co-CEO, co-founder and chair will step into a strategic advisor to the CEO role and will remain integral to the organization as co-founder and executive chair of the Workday board of directors.

The news is hardly unexpected, with the pair telling ERP Today of their succession plans for Workday in an exclusive interview last year, when Eschenbach was first named co-CEO to serve alongside Bhusri.

Speaking on this latest news on his taking the helm, Eschenbach has expressed his firm belief in the company: “Working alongside Aneel for the last year has been a highlight of my career, and has solidified my belief in the opportunities ahead for Workday.

“I’m honored to serve as CEO of this incredible company, and to continue working with our world-class leadership team and more than 18,000 Workmates around the globe to build one of the most enduring software businesses of our time.”

For Bhusri, the role refresh will allow him to focus more on an area he has long preferred: the technology and product strategy. Moving forward, Bhusri will now be particularly focused on advising the business on innovation and the future direction of Workday’s technology platform.

To Workday, the ex-venture capitalist Eschenbach presented a new avenue to increase company growth and profitability. Just six weeks into Eschenbach’s co-CEO role, Bhusri had already described a “new energy” and impact emerging within the organization.

Now, over a year down the line, Bhusri’s confidence continues. “Workday has never been in a stronger position, thanks in large part to the impact Carl has made in his first year,” said Bhusri. “From the start, he has embodied the company’s core set of values and I am confident that he is the right person to help Workday scale and lead us into our next phase of growth.”

The announcement marks the latest in a series of leadership changes for Workday over the past year, as a new CFO, CMO and CIO have all joined the bench respectively across the business.

Since Eschenbach’s undertaking of the co-CEO role in December 2022, the firm has reached a series of milestones. Following the increased momentum from its mass expansion scheme, Workday has hit over $1bn in annual recurring revenue (ARR) for its EMEA business, as well as strengthening its retail, hospitality and financial services industry business to additionally each surpass $1bn in ARR mark.

More users are continuing to flock to Workday for its HCM and FSM software, with the vendor now surpassing 65 million users under contract and more than 10,000 global customers.

It has also hosted its largest annual user conferences in the US and EMEA to-date, with nearly 250,000 cumulative attendees, and its partnership ecosystem has also grown substantially since last year, boasting new and expanded partnerships with Accenture, ADP, Alight and AWS, to name a few.

The takeaway from this takeover? With Eschenbach at the helm, Workday is firmly pointed toward its growth goals and getting ever closer to reaching its $10bn annual revenue target by 2025.